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Predators aim to keep series road streak going

Road team has won each game as series returns to Anaheim

by Robby Stanley / Correspondent

NASHVILLE -- Home ice has been anything but an advantage for the Anaheim Ducks and Nashville Predators in their Western Conference First Round series.

The best-of-7 series is tied 2-2, and the road team has won every game. Game 5 is at Honda Center on Saturday (6 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TVA Sports, SN).

After losing two straight at Bridgestone Arena, Nashville is looking for a big response.

"We just fight back," Predators defenseman Ryan Ellis said after the 4-1 loss in Game 4 on Thursday. "We played better [than Game 3]. I liked our game. I thought our second period for the most part was really strong, and then a couple of shots here or there bit us. We have to pick our heads up. We've got to come back and play harder, play tougher and find our game again."

Nashville has struggled to solve Anaheim's defense the past two games. Anaheim goaltender Frederik Andersen started Games 3 and 4 and allowed one goal after John Gibson allowed six goals in the first two games.

Now it's a best-of-3 series, and the Predators will have to generate more high-quality offensive chances moving forward if they hope to win.

"We've got to get the next one," Predators captain Shea Weber said. "There's nothing we can do about the past two, and we hadn't won anything after the first two. It's a seven-game series for a reason. You've got to win four games, and the first team to do so wins."

One of the big reasons for Nashville's struggles at home was an inability to convert on the power play. They went 0-for-11 with the man-advantage in two games at Bridgestone Arena, and are 1-for-19 in the series.

In addition to making the Ducks pay for their trips to the penalty box, the Predators also have to solve Anaheim's defense-first game plan.

"That's the name of the playoffs," Predators coach Peter Laviolette said. "Playoffs go back and forth. That's why often times it goes back and forth and there's ups and downs to it. You've got to respond to it. There's a day between games. Our guys will be ready to play in Anaheim. I'm sure of that. The effort was there tonight. The results we don't like, and we'll look to try and fix those and get better."

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